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02-15-2004, 01:01 AM
AikiWeb Poll for the week of February 15, 2004:

How long do your "warm-up" exercises take in your aikido classes?

I don't do aikido
No warm-ups
1-5 minutes
6-10 minutes
11-15 minutes
16-20 minutes
21-25 minutes
26-30 minutes
31-35 minutes
36-40 minutes
41-45 minutes
46-50 minutes
51-55 minutes
56-60 minutes
Over an hour


Here are the current results (http://www.aikiweb.com/polls/results.html?poll_id=207).

Roger C. Marks
02-15-2004, 06:15 AM
Although I returned the reply 21-25 minutes, this only relates to what may be termed specific warm up movements but in truth the warm up continues to include preparatory work for techniques to follow. This may extend the warm up another 30 minutes or more. But maybe the whole of the session is a warm up? (2 hours).

Bronson
02-15-2004, 11:01 AM
Including ukemi 20-30 minutes.

Bronson

judd h.
02-15-2004, 11:36 AM
I suppose about 21-25 minutes... I never really pay attention to time while in class!

rachmass
02-15-2004, 11:43 AM
Ours are pretty short, about 5-8 minutes of stretches and another 5-10 minutes of ukemi practice, or between 10-20 minutes total. Class is only 60 minutes long....I hope people warm up before class as well.

Josh Bisker
02-15-2004, 07:23 PM
Our sessions are two hours long, but we get about an hour and a half of practive time between laying out and taking up our mats; not including this extra-activity activity, i'd say we take about fifteen minutes to warm up, and then ukemi practice. Then of course there's those days when I think "what the hell technique was I gonna do today?" and then somehow we might take a little longer to stretch out before starting class, hahaha.

TomCat
02-15-2004, 07:40 PM
I always figure that if I ever need to use (physical) Aikido, I won't have the opportunity to warm up. For this reason, I rarely do warmups though most of the class does.

Tom

PeterR
02-15-2004, 09:16 PM
15-20 minutes of warm-ups followed by about 20 minutes of drills which I suppose can also be considered warm-ups.


I always figure that if I ever need to use (physical) Aikido, I won't have the opportunity to warm up. For this reason, I rarely do warm-ups though most of the class does.
I assume that you don't mean you stand around while the rest of the class goes through the paces.

I first heard your reasoning back in my Nippon Kenpo days and on the outside it makes some sort of sense. It did to me at the time. However, it is wrong.

First of all there is no evidence that warming-up decreases your ability to respond when the brown stuff hits the fan and your body is cold. Lots of anecdotal evidence otherwise.

In fact, your warm-up can effect parts of your body that normal training would not and hence increase their ability to respond.

A properly designed warm-up reduces those little unseen injuries that accumulate from practice. Less of those is good especially if Bubba and the boys want to use you as a basketball.

sanosuke
02-15-2004, 09:39 PM
this makes me wonder, is warming up/stretching needed for aikidoka?. One of my seniors said there's no need to warm up in aikido because every technique is stretching/warm up itself. but for me personally i prefer to do a stretching/warm up before we move on to aiki-taiso/ukemi exercise, because when i go straight to aiki-taiso i had a muscle cramp during the end of class.

PeterR
02-15-2004, 11:14 PM
I got a question - every poll there is at least one I don't do Aikido answer. Is it the same guy?

happysod
02-16-2004, 03:37 AM
PeterR, nope, I've used that check box myself after reading some of the spiritual essays and deciding my take on what aikido is differs greatly from what is meant by aikido by many other responders, so I accept their distinction.

PeterR
02-16-2004, 03:57 AM
PeterR, nope, I've used that check box myself after reading some of the spiritual essays and deciding my take on what aikido is differs greatly from what is meant by aikido by many other responders, so I accept their distinction.
Love that. Maybe I should start checking that box myself ....... Not.

Not quite ready to view Aikido interpretation as a democracy ;)

Waiting to be ganned from e-budo for my last little outburst.

So Ian - when NOT doing Aikido - do you warm-up?

happysod
02-16-2004, 05:20 AM
PeterR, I'm sure you're the model of tact and diplomacy on e-budo (and how painful is being ganned likely to be? ;) ).

Yes, I warm up when doing whatever I dress up stupidly to do, but I wish I'd read the other responses first as I didn't add ukemi as part of the warm-up. Amazing how people's interpretations differ...

PeterR
02-16-2004, 06:00 AM
PeterR, I'm sure you're the model of tact and diplomacy on e-budo (and how painful is being ganned likely to be? ;) ).
I've heard that ganning came be excruciating - what they do in Singapore is for wimps. Note to self: use that spell checker.
Yes, I warm up when doing whatever I dress up stupidly to do, but I wish I'd read the other responses first as I didn't add ukemi as part of the warm-up. Amazing how people's interpretations differ...
As I indicated in my post I'm not sure drills, including ukemi and the various undo, could be considered warm-up although they serve the same function. The drills really are skill development and often we will interject them between techniques just to get the blood racing a little bit. We want to stay warm for the randori at the end of class.

paw
02-16-2004, 07:51 AM
30 minutes of warm ups sounds very long, even for a two hour class. Personally, I'd rather have a two minute warm up, then 28 minutes of strength and conditioning training.

To be clear, a warm up is a routine used to prepare the body for work. Generally, this is done by increasing the body temperature with full body movements. This should not be a terribly difficult task, it should be something the individual can do. (For example, jogging or jumping rope)

For strength and conditioning training, I'm referring to a routine where some facet of athleticism would be increased. This will be a challenging activity, and it might be such that is the individual struggles to complete it. (Body weight exercises --- push ups, squats, yoga, pilates; Anaerobic/Aerobic conditioning --- high intensity intervals, etc....)

That's just my personal opinion. YMMV.

Regards,

Paul

happysod
02-16-2004, 08:03 AM
That's just my personal opinion yeah, but if anyone disagrees you'll hit them with so many websites/references they'll be sorry... anyway, have you and Kevin come up with that fabled ukemi warm-up yet?

paw
02-16-2004, 09:25 AM
Ian,
yeah, but if anyone disagrees you'll hit them with so many websites/references they'll be sorry

Not this time. I view warm ups and class formats as personal preferences. How people want to train is fine with me...you pay your money, you make your choice.

The only time I'll start throwin' down on the web sites is when someone says "our class format is the best/is geared for/is optimal for <whatever>" ..... That's another story.
have you and Kevin come up with that fabled ukemi warm-up yet?

Was I suppposed to?

Here's a two minute Warm Up:

1. Pick 4 - 6 bodyweight movements/exercises

2. Have a countdown timer

3. Divide two minutes by the total number

of movements you choose, and work

continously from one exercise to another

for the entire two minutes.

Example: squat thrusts, jumping jacks, mountain climbers, jumping rope

Do each movement for 30 seconds (each person can go as fast or as slow as want, but they must keep moving)

Warm up by:

1. jump rope (or hop in place)

2. jumping jacks

3. mountain climbers

4. squat thrusts

Ukemi/Tumbling Sequence (this is more of a drill to work on body mechanics...aikidoists don't need to be gymnasts....work from easy movements to harder movements....be continuous in movement, no pausing from one to another)

1. forward roll

2. backward roll

3. forward roll, pivot, backward roll

4. backward roll, pivot, forward roll

5. backward roll, pivot, forward roll, jump

6. backward roll pushing up to handstand

7. cartwheel

8. tripod, push up to headstand, overbalance

to forward roll

etc......

you can do partner work too like: wheelbarrows, piggyback carry, bear crawl dragging partner, etc....

when waiting for your turn for the next sequence, hop or jog in place

Anyway, these are just ideas. Change, combine, discard and explore.

Regards,

Paul

Bronson
02-16-2004, 11:17 AM
I'm not sure drills, including ukemi and the various undo
If I break it down I get about 5 min. of stretching (the strething is really more range of motion movement with a pause at the outer edge); 15 min. of undo; and 5-10 min. of ukemi depending on what I want to have them do that night.

Our classes our 1 1/2 hours so that leaves us with a full hour for technique practice.

Bronson

Joanne Arnest
02-16-2004, 05:50 PM
I think our warmups are about 10 to 15 minutes long, depending upon who is teaching. Sometimes we do some ukemi afterwards. Warmups were a bit longer on the days when the sensei asked one of the students who does yoga to lead us in some yoga stretches and breathing excercises.

G DiPierro
02-16-2004, 07:13 PM
I usually do about 5 minutes or less of warm-ups, then maybe some rolls or something like shikko practice, as I did today. Also, I usually do several repetitions of the first technique as a "back stretch" without a fall since I think it helps to ease into moving with a partner without having to hit the mat right away.

However, at the end of class I take another 5 to 10 minutes for stretching. This is different from warm-ups as it is slow and relaxing. Warm-ups are much faster and designed to get the blood moving and the muscles warm. Although many dojos engage in it, I don't see much point in slow, meditative stretching at the beginning of class since that is actually a cool-down, not a warm-up. I save that for the end of class, and I find it makes a significant difference in how I feel the rest of the day. If I don't stretch after class, I get noticeably tight afterward, so whenever I am at a seminar or visiting another dojo, I normally take several minutes after class to stretch on my own. The best time and place for this is right on the mat since the muscles are still warm. Once they have chance to cool down and tighten up, it is much harder to stretch them back out again.

TomCat
02-16-2004, 10:11 PM
I assume that you don't mean you stand around while the rest of the class goes through the paces.
No, I generally sit in seiza and meditate. I also stretch throughout the day.

PeterR
02-17-2004, 01:19 AM
No, I generally sit in seiza and meditate. I also stretch throughout the day.
Not picking on you Tom - just in the mood and hopefully Jun will use this as next week's poll.

Besides a tenuous connection to Mu Aikido and Zen meditation are diametrically opposed - if not in goal in method. There was quite an ugly discussion here just recently about the relationship between Zen and Budo and I'm really not interested in going back there but I really wonder why anyone would come to an Aikido class to meditate. The privacy of your own home or a mediation class if you prefer is far more appropriate.

Mokuso, the short meditation before and at the end of class, really is more of a clearing of mind and preparation for class rather than meditation proper.

Warm-ups on the other hand are part of the Aikido class and why on earth anyone would put themselves above the group and pointedly do something else is beyond me.

I'm generally pretty laid back about class but I'd have something to say about it.

Bronson
02-17-2004, 02:06 AM
I'm with Peter on this one. Barring the existance of an injury or something similar that prevents you from doing certain motions, do what the class is doing.

Just my opinion though.

Bronson

MaryKaye
02-17-2004, 09:56 AM
We do about five minutes of stretches and between five and fifteen minutes of drills and ukemi practice. At beginners' classes the instructors always say that this is not enough warmup and people should stretch before class. I usually stretch my feet, which otherwise cramp up.

Some of the senior people feel free to skip warmups. As a very junior student I wouldn't do this, but I also know from painful experience that if I don't warm up, I'll hurt myself. I don't know if it's the physical stretching or the mental centering or both.

Our full set of hitori waza is too many for an hour-long class unless they are taken at high speed; we usually do eight to ten of the twenty.

I was a guest at a dojo with a much more physical and high-energy style. They did far more warm-ups and stretches, and took them much faster. I wondered why, till we got to the techniques....

Mary Kaye

Janet Rosen
02-18-2004, 06:51 PM
I like to warm up before stretching by walking a block or two then once in the dojo by doing small forward rolls in 8 directions. This warms me up in aikido movements while giving me an opportunity to do a checkin and feel how my body is doing, any aches, rough spots, etc. Then I stretch major muscle groups. In middle age I need to do these things.

Duarh
02-18-2004, 11:27 PM
In middle age I need to do these things.
Heh. I'm 18 and I strain something whenever I don't warm up properly. I think it depends just as much on the person as on age. Our warmups tend to be 10 to 20 minutes in themselves, but I like to do 10 mins of my own beforehand - just so that my ankles/knees don't suffer from seiza, for instance.

At my home dojo in Latvia, sometimes half the class would pass in 'warmups' (50 to 60 mins) - because it would be a beginner class with everybody learning to roll & sometimes doing strength building exercises across the mat. It was sometimes frustrating, but everyone could always use the practice - I think warming up by ukemi, after a minimum of preparatory warm-ups (heh, nice term, that), is a very good way to do warmups - you get to improve your rolls and get ready for class at the same time. . .

wendyrowe
02-19-2004, 06:35 AM
Most of us get to class early and do warmup stretching since the class is only an hour long. Depending on who's in class, sometimes we stretch for 3-5 minutes at the beginning of class but not always. We always do warmups/mechanics the length of the dojo: ukemi forwards, ukemi backwards, knee walking, "floor crawls" and maybe one or two others.

As for Janet's ukemi-as-diagnostic: I discovered that myself a few months ago, since if my ukemi feels "wrong" it means (on me) that something's misaligned along my spine. I'm working on strengthening my back muscles & intercostals and they're better at holding stuff where it belongs, but I've also gotten good at twisting and pushing in the right places til my ukemi feels right again. If my ukemi feels wrong but I don't do something to realign myself, I always wind up getting hurt.

SeiserL
02-19-2004, 09:59 AM
We do a complete warm-up sequence of 15-20 minutes every class (90 minutes) including ukemi.

Min
02-23-2004, 04:09 PM
Although I returned the reply 21-25 minutes, this only relates to what may be termed specific warm up movements but in truth the warm up continues to include preparatory work for techniques to follow. This may extend the warm up another 30 minutes or more. But maybe the whole of the session is a warm up? (2 hours).
I replied with 15 minutes of warm-ups. These include self-stretches and rolling. For the most part, once the instructor includes a new portion into this regimen, I consider that to be the beginning of class. Oftentimes, the

instructor begins class with a stretch leading into falls. Although I may be

familiar with the terminoology and possibly the technique, each time I try to treat as new; new conditions such as mindset, fellow students, even surroundings, change the dynamic of the movement shown. With this

possibility, I suppose even stretching would be a new experience each time. However, with

those first fifteen minutes, both the mind and the body have time to prepare further for interacting with other minds and other bodies (hopefully, joined). In addition, those warm-ups serve their initial purpose. Once that is done, all else is exercise.

--I apologize for the amateur nature of this reply. This is my first post and will try to refine this reply in the future.